New Toyota GR Corolla MORIZO is a Track-Focused Corolla

Published on June 1, 2022 in News by Guillaume Rivard

As if the hot new 2023 Toyota GR Corolla wasn’t enough, the Japanese automaker will pair the Core and Circuit Edition models with a MORIZO Edition named after Toyota president Akio “Morizo” Toyoda.

This track-oriented version of GR Corolla was designed to meet specifications desired by Toyoda himself including tight handling, a high power-to-weight ratio and a highly rigid body. 

While output from the small turbocharged 1.6-litre triple-cylinder engine is unchanged at 300 horsepower, peak torque is increased to 295 pound-feet (+22), all of which is accessible from 3,250-4,600 rpm. The MORIZO edition has an exclusive close-ratio six-speed manual transmission and shorter differential gears for more satisfying acceleration across the power band, while the GR-Four all-wheel drive system returns with the same selectable 30-70, 50-50 and 60-40 front-to-rear wheel power settings.

Photo: Toyota

Engineers at Toyota’s GAZOO Racing division also cut over 100 pounds, bringing the GR Corolla’s weight down to 3,186 pounds. Believe it or not, they removed the rear seats, speakers and window regulators, making the car a two-seater, and even the rear wiper blade and motor were axed.

Next, in order to deliver extra stability and grip, two braces span the rear of the cabin for structural support,  349 spot welds are added, wider Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires wrap the 18-inch forged wheels, and the red-painted monotube shock absorbers have unique suspension tuning for a more precise driving feel.

Photo: Toyota

Inside, look for leather- and Ultrasuede-trimmed sport seats in black with red stitching and seat belts, but more importantly high bolsters and holes to fit a racing harness. The steering wheel, also finished in Ultrasuede, has a red top-centre marker, while the 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster provides all sorts of performance data. And since there are no rear seats, you have ample space to fit four tires for a track day.

Just 200 numbered units of the GR Corolla MORIZO Edition will be produced for model year 2023. The lone body colour option for Canadian customers is a new matte Grey as seen on the pictures. Pricing will be announced later this year with availability at Toyota dealerships in 2023.

Photo: Toyota

2023 Corolla Changes and Updates

What about the rest of the Toyota Corolla lineup? There is a lot to report, starting with the popular LE model gaining the 169-horsepower 2.0-litre engine as standard. The 139-horsepower 1.8-litre mill is no more.

The Corolla Hybrid adds three new models for 2023, all of them featuring electric all-wheel drive. Yes, it’s the same e-AWD system currently found on the Prius. A magnet-free electric motor drives the rear wheels from 0-10 km/h, great for accelerating from a stop, and up to 70 km/h when necessary.

Photo: Toyota

All 2023 Corolla models gain next-generation Toyota Safety Sense 3.0, which includes enhanced versions of the Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist, Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Lane Tracing Assist, Road Sign Assist and Automatic High Beams. This is excellent news as some of Toyota’s more expensive products are still with the 2.5 version.

Another fantastic surprise awaits Corolla drivers, namely a brand new multimedia system that is more responsive and more user-friendly. It comes with an intelligent voice assistant (simple phrases like “Hey Toyota” awakens the system for voice-activated commands), several cloud-based features and services, over-the-air software updates and the ability to pair two different phones at once via Bluetooth. The touchscreen is eight inches in size, and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is also included.

Photo: Toyota

As for exterior styling, revisions were made to the grille, bumpers, headlights and wheels, although these vary from one model or trim level to another. New body colours are available, too, such as Midnight Black Metallic and Inferno.

Once again, we’ll have to wait a few more months to get pricing details for the 2023 Toyota Corolla.

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